How to Read Economic Survey for UPSC Exam?

1.   What is Economic Survey?

Economic Survey of India is a flagship annual document of the Ministry of Finance, Government of India. It reviews the developments in the Indian economy over the previous 12 months, summarizes the performance on major development programmes, and highlights the policy initiatives of the government and the prospects of the economy in the short to medium term.  


    2. What is the purpose of economic survey? It reviews the developments in the Indian economy over the previous 12 months, summarizes the performance on major development programmes, and highlights the policy initiatives of the government and the prospects of the economy in the short to medium term.  


    3. What is the relevance of economic survey for civil services examination? Since this report deals with the developments of Indian economy, which is a part of the Civil Service exam syllabus too, it becomes imperative to go through and analyse thoroughly. It is an indication of our country’s economic progress in various fields and hence can also be used as an effective information source for the essay paper.  


    4. What is the weightage given to it in prelims? One can easily expect 5-6 indirect questions in the prelims examination of the civil services.  


    5. What is the weightage given to it in mains? From the past 3-4 years analysis of the mains question paper of the civil services examination, it can be stated that around 7-8 out of 20 questions are directly related to the economic suvey.  


    6. The book is very bulky. Do I need to read it line by line? If you have time in hand, then reading line-by-line can be done to understand it better and get a holistic picture. If you are running out of time, we would suggest, at least read the information provided in the boxes.  


    7. I am very weak in the basics of economics. Will I be able to understand anything if I directly read the survey? In such a case, we would suggest that while going through the survey, keep a check on the basic terminology that you are unaware of. Check it then and there. This would clarify your concepts too and also these concepts have a higher chance of appearing in the prelims exam due to their link with the current affairs.  


    8. How many times do I revise? We would recommend at least 3 revisions will get you in a safe zone.  


    9. Is it mandatory to read the previous years’ survey too along with the current year? In case you have time, it would be a wise decision to have a look on the previous years’ survey too. It will give you an insight on what were the goals for the next year (as in for this present year) that were set and what have we been able to achieve. If not, what were the reasons?  


    10. Is it mandatory to remember all the factual data mentioned? No.  


    11. If not, then how to deal with the numbers? After you have gone through, analysed and understood the survey, it is advisable to make a fact sheet at the end noting down some important numbers. For example: the unemployment data, the GDP numbers, etc.i.e, some important macro-economic indicators. Please note that having a rough idea of the numbers is enough.  


    12. Which chapters are extremely important in the survey? Here we suggest not to skip any chapter entirely. However, from the points below, students can get an understanding on the importance of the chapters.  


    Volume 1  

  • Priority one: The entire Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 9, 10, 11
  • Priority two: Chapters 5, 6, 8 (focus area should be the boxes)

    Volume 2  

  • Priority one: The entire Chapters 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 9
  • Priority two: Chapters 4, 6 and 7 (focus area should be the boxes)

 

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